Many people know me only as a photographer, because I have been a professional photographer in the classical music field for thirty-five years.
But before that I was a professional pianist, playing recitals with many wonderful musicians, including Yo-Yo Ma, Kyung-Wha Chung, Renata Tebaldi, and Jon Vickers. And prior to that I was a contest-winning piano student at Juilliard, studying with the legendary Rosina Lhévinne.
Back then I had a dream of learning the entire Iberia, twelve gorgeous but super-difficult pieces by Isaac Albéniz. In high school I had fallen in love with flamenco guitar music and listened to recordings of Montoya and Sabicas. As a Juilliard student I learned one of the Iberia pieces, Triana, but never thought I could learn them all. Then in 2008 a series of coincidences led me to open the score again, and I had an opportunity to learn a few at a time and play them for classes at Juilliard. In 2009 I performed El Puerto and Málaga at the International Keyboard Institute and Festival: my first public performance in twenty-five years! And a year later an opportunity arose for me to record the complete set. This took nearly another year, but by the end of 2011 the recording was complete. It has been produced as VEC 101 by Concert Artists Guild, and is the first release of The Victor Elmaleh Collection. The CD has gotten some fine reviews, which you can see here.
The entire set takes 80 minutes to play, but divides easily into smaller segments. The music playing on this page is from the first piece, Evocación. Click the link below to hear all the pieces, complete.